February 26, 2018

Personal Finance Tips for Students to prepare for the Real World

Adulting is tough… Trust me I know. I am speaking to you from the other side. Having been a student and in the working world, there are some things I wish that I had known about earlier that would have helped me with personal finance tips. The financial transition between being a student and entering into the working world can be a huge leap. But with a little guidance and forward thinking, it can be easy to navigate. Here are a few tips that will help you along the way.

While you’re a Student: 

Try to work while you Study- For most people this might seem like a big ask. After all who wants to manage a hectic study schedule and still pull time at an after-hours job? But the benefit here is twofold. One, you get to earn money while you’re a student and two, you get to add some work experience to your CV.

Start Saving today- Even if you feel that you are not earning much money, it helps to take a jar and fill it up with even as little as R2 to R5 a week. On a grander scale, you can definitely start a savings account with a debit order that goes off every month. Figure out ways to save long-term and have short-term savings on hand.

Share certain Food costs with friends if you live at a Res- If you think about it, there really isn’t any need to break the bank on a daily basis with expensive lattes and meals out. You can easily come up with a food sharing club or have a communal coffee station at one person’s house. If you do live in a residence or accommodation, this is an easy way in which to save on some much-needed funds.

Once you begin working: 

On the other side of the spectrum, once you begin working, there is a whole new dynamic that comes into play. Although it may seem enticing that you are now about to earn a salary, you will still need to be careful about how you spend your funds. Here are some tips for saving that will help you in the present moment, and many years down the line.

Live Below your Means

It may be tempting to spend your money like there’s an infinite supply of it, but in all honesty, it isn’t recommended that you do so. If you can’t live below your means, find ways to at least live within your means. By doing so, you will create a greater bank of savings and earnings.

Pay off your Student Debt as Soon as you can  

Once you are done studying, it’s easy to delay payments on your student loan because you feel as if you need a breather. But then fast forward a few months and years and somewhere in the middle of a tight financial period in your life, when debtors come calling you do realise that you simply can’t ignore it anymore. Before it gets to this point, pay off your student debt.

Start Budgeting

It is never too early to have a financial plan. One of the most important things is knowing where your money is going to. Take the time to actually sit down and get real about your finances. One of the easiest things to do is make a list of what your living expenses are. Set aside some money that will go into your rainy day savings. Perhaps save for the car that you’ve been dreaming of and that extra qualification that you’ve always wanted to add to your CV.

The transition between being a student and arriving into the working world doesn’t have to be an overwhelming one. With a little bit of planning and forward thinking, you can breathe easily, knowing that you have your own back. See saving as an act of self-love and do it for yourself. 

About the Author
Laeeka Khan- Media professional, senior writer and blogger at Educor Holdings.

I blog about matters that relate to education and personal development. I am an out-of-the-box thinker, fascinated with perceptions of the mind’s eye, the power of imagination and creative learning. I am passionate about the human experience, and an avid believer in dialogue, breaking stereotypes, sharing information and the power of the arts. I also appreciate fine coffee and dark chocolate. Join me on this journey of knowledge and exploration.

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